The Santa Maria Police Department on Friday will conduct a DUI/driver’s license checkpoint at an undisclosed location within the city limits between 6 p.m. and 3 a.m. on Friday.
Checkpoints are placed in locations based on collision statistics and frequency of DUI arrests, according to Santa Maria Police Chief Phil Hansen.
During the checkpoint, officers will be looking for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment and, also, checking that drivers have proper licensing.
In addition, Hansen said officers will be watching for those who may be using prescription drugs, particularly those with warnings on the label, or marijuana that could result in a DUI.
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Drivers who are caught driving impaired and charged with a DUI could expect to be arrested and face fines up to $13,500, Hansen said.
In 2018, the Santa Maria Police Department investigated 191 DUI collisions that killed four people and resulted in another 32 injuries.
The Santa Maria Police Department offers these tips to avoid a DUI:
- Have a designated sober driver, such as a friend who isn’t drinking, a ride-share, cab or any public transportation;
- If someone is clearly impaired to drive, take the keys and help them make other arrangements to find a sober way home;
- Report drunk drivers by calling 911;
- If hosting a house party, offer nonalcoholic drinks and monitor who is drinking and how they are getting home.